(AP) The owner of Mandee, Annie Sez and Afaze stores is citing effects from Superstorm Sandy as it seeks Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.
Big M Inc., of Totowa, N.J., filed the petition in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in New Jersey.
The company was recovering from the economic downturn when the storm closed most of its stores in New Jersey, New York and Connecticut for a week or more along with its offices and distribution center.
Business never rebounded. Documents show the company has not yet collected from its insurance carrier. Big M says that left it without enough cash to operate.
The family owned retailer is reporting debt of about $15 million. It was founded in 1948, operates 129 stores in eight states and employs about 1,200.